By the 18th century, defensive armour had virtually disappeared from the battlefield, in response to the development of firearms and their increased power and accuracy.
Mobility was much more useful to a soldier than heavy armour.
The British Army gained its nickname the ‘Redcoats’ from the colour of the woollen coats a lot of the regiments wore.
The 18th and 19th century was a time of ornamental military uniforms. By mass-producing uniforms, thousands of soldiers could be equipped quickly and standard sizes and designs were easier to replace on campaign. These colourful uniforms eventually gave way in the late-19th century to the khaki tunics more suited for actual combat.
18th century British cavalry sword
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Pistols such as this were frequently used by cavalry.
Dates from 1725 | Object number: XII.1703 and 1704
Light Cavalry Trooper sword, Pattern 1796
Dates from 1808-1820 | Object number: IX.245